Anti-war Briefs


Fifth Estate # 53, May 1-15, 1968

Fort Ord, Calif., (LNS)—Two GI’s, members of the American Serviceman’s Union, face possible charges of “promoting disloyalty and disaffection among the troops and the civilian populace.” Pvts. Ken Stolte, Jr. and Pfc. Daniel Amick are being investigated because of their leaflet, We Protest.”

The Army maintains “they did publish and distribute leaflets urging the formation of a union to organize their opposition to the war.

Fort Sill, Okka., (LNS)—Two members of the American Serviceman’s Union, backed by Youth Against War and Fascism; are being harassed by the Army. Corp. Rodney Ashiro, charged with using a “disrespectful inflection” to his battery commander, was court-martialed and convicted, but the penalty was mild: demotion to Pfc.

Private Andy Stapp has been given an undesirable discharge at Ft. Sill, and is contesting it. Stapp, with Pfc. Howard Petrick, has been agitating against the war for several months here.

WASHINGTON, D.C., March 29 (LNS)—Two Army mental-health specialists told UPI in Saigon today that a new kind of combat fatigue—combat neurosis—has become peculiar to American GI’s in Vietnam, and occurs in proportion to the length of time they stay there.

Lt. Col. Robert L. Petera and Capt. Basil M. Johnson were reported as saying the symptoms of combat neurosis are inability to sleep, anxiety, guilt, and vomiting and diarrhea; the condition develops after the GI has spent at least 10 months in Vietnam; and that 94.9 per cent of men with some kind of combat fatigue are returned to active duty.

FORT DEVENS, Mass., (LNS)—The Army has not yet decided whether it will court-martial second Lt. Dennis Morisseau, but it has penalized his military lawyer. First Lt. Nicholas Berzoni, in civilian life a lawyer, has been ordered to stay on base for 60 days, and transferred from legal work to a transportation unit (which may be headed for Vietnam) because Berzoni accompanied Morriseau when the latter picketed the White House in uniform March 10. (See Fifth Estate, April 16-30.)

Morrisseau was indicted after he refused to board a plane from Washington to Ft. Devens ahead of schedule, as ordered. He has a civilian counsel, Harvard law professor Edward Sherman, and has filed papers for military discharge as a conscientious objector. Morrisseau has received about 100 pieces of mail from other soldiers, all positive.

Fort Campbell, Ky., April 13—A curfew has been imposed on this base after G.I.’s broke loose in scattered acts of rebellion against the army on the nights of April 11 and 12. Men are required under the curfew to stay inside their barracks from 11 at night until 5 in the morning, and from 8 until 12 in the morning unless they are on duty.

After a week when the entire post was mobilized in response to uprisings in major cities across the country, soldiers here began some uprisings of their own. Angry G.I.’s mainly black, were reported tipping over cars, breaking furniture and attacking MP’s. A very tight news security has been clamped on all this and on the extent of the damage. But extra MP’s have been on patrol and CQ’s (Charge of Quarters) are patrolling their company areas in jeeps.